U.S. President Joe Biden will travel to Kentucky on Wednesday to view damage from last week’s devastating tornadoes that killed at least 74 people in the state and displaced thousands more.
Biden, who has already signed emergency declarations for the state of Kentucky said he stands ready to do the same for Illinois. He added that he has ordered his administration to make every resource available to local and state officials in Kentucky and the other states impacted by the storms.
“We’re going to have to go beyond what is available to the federal government, for example, where FEMA can come up with up to $35,000 in housing restoration,” Biden said, adding, “there’s a lot to be done and we’re just getting underway. But we’re going to work with all the governors to make sure that we can.”
The president said his message to state governors was that the federal government would help them get “whatever they need, when they need it.”
Biden added, “We’re going to be there as long as it takes to help.”
While Kentucky was hit the hardest, the storm that generated several tornadoes late Friday and early Saturday also left destruction in the states of Arkansas, Illinois, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee. Strong storms of this nature are unusual for December in North America. Meteorologists say record warm air and water temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico fueled those storms.